Friday, June 19, 2009

The Hourglass Door by Lisa Mangum

The Hourglass Door by Lisa Mangum

Abby is just an ordinary teen at an ordinary high school. She plans on going to college in the fall, co-directs the school play, and has a cute and nice boyfriend. There is just one problem with her life—there are no surprises. She feels trapped in her ordinary plans, and in her predictable relationship with a boy she has know since before Kindergarten. Then Dante, an Italian exchange student, moves into town and joins the school play. While everyone agrees that there is something strange about him, Abby doesn’t really believe the rumors that he is dangerous, or on the run from the law. He is handsome, mysterious, and Abby is attracted to him. As she spends more time with him strange things start to happen. Will Dante tell her the truth about his past soon enough for her to protect those around her?

Alright, from the beginning of this book I got a Twilight vibes, and I was going to be mad if the big secret Dante revealed was that he was a vampire. So, I was pleased when the book went another direction entirely. So, while the book is similar to Twilight it is totally different. I also liked it a lot more than Twilight because the characters seemed a bit more realistic and honest. I really didn’t like that the author played up so much on the fact that Dante was dangerous/deadly because he wasn’t in the way you would expect. I would have preferred more of a mysterious secret/past angle. Yet, no doubt, a deadly boyfriend does lend itself to more conflict than mysterious past does. So let’s not quibble. This is a suspenseful romance with a time travelling plot that has its foundation in historic Italy. This really is an excellent book with clever twists, strong characters, and a great plot. I really would recommend.

Lisa's Website:

(Spoilers-Present-Post-Script=Gamila’s weird musings. So, I was a Latin major, and so this book should get extra points for quoting Virgil, right? But I never really liked Virgil. I always liked Ovid or Cicero better, but I thought I would share my awkward intellectual literary ponderings with you. So, you know how I like the underworld right? Go back tohere to remember. So, with Dante and Virgil obviously present and influencing the creation of this book. Can we say that the bank scenes in this book could be a sort of underworld? On the bank there is a river, which is a huge feature of many underworld geography. They have a guide system of a sort, and clear geography and etc. If I came up with a three column comparison and contrast chart and thought for a long time I could probably write a small paper that said something interesting about the connections. What would happen if we compared Abby to Dante or Aeneas? What did she learn on the bank(aka underworld) that helped her complete her Hero’s Journey? Eh? Eh? How’s that for intellectual ramblings?! I could totally write a paper, but I won’t because I don’t have too. Hurrah!!! Okay, one way this series could get awesomely cooler is if Abby actually got to time travel to Italy.)


Susan said...

Thanks so much for your comment on my blog concerning LDS literature. I'm one of those people that keeps dissing on it, but I do occasionally come across LDS novels/writers that I like. The Hourglass Door wasn't one of them, but I have lots of hope for all these new LDS authors that seem to be coming out of the woodwork. I'd love to find the Dan Wells book you mentioned. I have a friend in the UK - maybe she's search it out for me???

Anyway, I'm glad you liked this book. It wasn't for me, but I've seen several positive reviews. I think it's going to be popular. Thanks for your review!

Gamila said...

Yeah, I can understand someone not liking it. I is sort of formulaic when it comes down to it, but I thought it was still fun. Sorry If I scared people away from your post. I'm kind of root for the underdog type person in this case.

Susan said...

No, your comment was great - it added more depth to the discussion. I'm rooting for LDS writers, too. They're getting better and better.